Player Profile: Ismael Sanogo

The New Jersey Roadrunners are one of the more prestigious AAU programs in the Northeast. Kyrie Irving, the number 1 pick in the 2011 NBA draft, is a Roadrunners alum. Syracuse freshman Tyler Roberson was the face of the team for the past several years. A Roadrunner currently drawing a wide range of college interest is 2014 forward Ismael Sanogo.

On Monday, Hawk Hill Hardwood spoke with Roadrunners coach Uron Hawkins about Ismael Sanogo, discussing his game, his recruitment, and his recent college visits.

A 6'6-6'7 forward from Newark East Side (NJ), Ismael checks in right around 185 pounds. "Offensively, he is a very strong open-court scorer," Hawkins began. "I would label him a long high-energy player that rebounds on both ends of the court. He is a good scorer from the 18-20 foot range. He can step out to the three-point line and hit the occasional three-pointer. He thrives on out-working his opponent."

Last week, Ish took two unofficial visits. His first visit, to Saint Joseph's, took place last Thursday. Ismael visited Hawk Hill with 2015 point guard, and Newark East Side teammate, Ahmad Harrison. "During his recent visit to St. Joe's, he enjoyed the small classroom sizes and recent basketball tradition," Hawkins explained. "Coach Bass was very informative throughout. The highlight of his visit was that St. Joe's offered round-the-clock academic tutoring for student-athletes. He liked the facilities and the opportunities that would be afforded to him if he went there."

The visit to Saint Joseph's was followed up by one to Seton Hall last week. "The visit at Seton Hall was very exciting to Ismael because they are local and in the Big East. He was able to play open gym with players like Isaiah Briscoe and some of the SHU players.," stated Hawkins.

According to Uron Hawkins, Ismael currently holds six offers, as well as quite a bit of serious interest. His offers are from Seton Hall, George Mason, UPenn, Buffalo, Niagara, and Delaware. In addition to those six offers, Sanogo also has a wide variety of schools involved. Hawkins told Hawk Hill Hardwood that "West Virginia, Creighton, UConn, St. Joe's, Duquesne, La Salle, Wagner, Stony Brook, and others" are involved with Ismael.

As a young member of the class of 2014, many colleges are attracted to Ismael's upside. "Ismael is 16, turning 17 this month," Hawkins said. "His AAU coach, Sandy Pyonin's, approach has made him physically and mentally tougher. He is a fighter, and I believe that whatever school he goes to would be receiving a great addition to their university."

With an offer from Penn, it's obvious that Ismael is a high-academic, high-character student. Hawkins elaborated on that. "He is a highly intelligent young man. His family goal is that he graduate with a 1200 SAT and a 3.2 GPA. Being a Newark Public School kid, we are extremely proud of his academic accomplishments."

Ismael Sanogo already holds a half-dozen Division 1 scholarship offers. This July will be a pivotal month for him, as many other schools will be watching him during the live periods and determining if they will extend offers his way. With strong grades, toughness, and a great work ethic, Ismael Sanogo is one to keep an eye on moving forward.

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